Finding The Best AR10 Scope – AR10 Optic Reviews

The father of the modern AR15, the AR10 is built on one of the best rifle platforms of all time. With ballistics that far out match even the best AR15. Using one of the most versatile rounds in the firearm industry, it works just as well on the battlefield as it does in the woods. 

Perfect for hunting just about anything in North America if you can get past the additional weight.  With extreme long range accuracy, you can even use it as a long range rifle. With all this versatility you’re going to want the best AR10 Scope you can find.

What’s The Best AR10 Scope?

1. Swarovski Riflescope Z3 4-12×50 Plex

Notable Features:

  • Crystal Clear Sight Picture
  • Extremely Durable Design
  • 100% Waterproof and Fogproof
  • Quick Speed Tactile Turrets

Check Price: Amazon

On a high dollar AR10 build you are going to need a quality rifle scope.  Swarovski’s 4-12×50 Riflescope is about as good as you are going to get without spending a fortune. 

Just like Swarovski diamonds these scopes have crystal clear glass.  That kind of quality comes with a high price tag so you’re not going to want to pair it with your budget 800$ AR10.

Swarovski Scopes are known for being some of the nicest scopes on the market. Their quality is reflected in their extremely high price tag. If budget isn’t a concern you need to check out one of these great scopes. 

With a wide range of magnification options you’re sure to find one that fits your needs.  Their 4-12x magnification scope offers the best sight picture for the price.

It’s hard to justify the price, but the glass is truly flawless. You can’t beat the clarity and color accuracy with any other optic in this price range.

Swarovski designed its Z3 scope to be used as a long range hunting scope. It actually has an extremely lightweight design for the size. Using a compact design, that doesn’t reduce the overall ruggedness. 

Backed by a lifetime warranty, the scope is completely shockproof waterproof and fogproof

The 4-12×50 magnification is perfect for most hunting and target shooting applications.  The 12x magnification will allow you to stretch out farther than most people can accurately shoot.

Designed to have extremely long and forgiving eye relief for a clear sight picture every time. With oversized turrets and tactile feedback you will be able to quickly adjust your sight in the field.  Unless you’re a professional shooter, you’ll likely never outgrow this Swarovski Rifle scope.

2. Leupold VX-2 4-12x40mm Rifle Scope

Notable Features:

  • Very Durable Design
  • Very Clear
  • Waterproof
  • Easy to Use Turrets

Check Price: Amazon

The vast majority of people will prefer Leupold’s VX-2 4-12x40mm Rifle scope. Unless your looking to spend a mint you can’t go wrong with the VX2. 

You just can’t beat Leupold’s proven track record in the optic market. Making some of the best mid priced scopes in the industry, and absolutely dominating the competition in this price range.

Picking a Leupold scope will always be a safe bet. Their VX-2 lineup is loaded with every magnification range you can think of. Their 4-12x40mm scope pairs well with the long range 308 round. 

You might want a little more magnification if you regularly shoot past 400 yards. Leupold really went all out designing this scope.  Using extremely clear glass that can’t be matched at this price. 

With index matched lead free glass you’ll always have a clear and bright sight picture.  Combining clarity and brightness makes the VX2 perfect for almost any lighting conditions. If there’s a little bit of light out in the sky you’ll be able to shoot. Very few other manufacturers come close to the optical brightness at this price.

Leupold scopes aren’t only about clarity.  Backed by Leupold’s Lifetime warranty you won’t have to worry about damage.  Constructed out of a completely shockproof aircraft grade aluminum body, and nitrogen purged tube. 

Nitrogen purged and O-ring seals mean the VX-2 is completely waterproof and fogproof. Delivering the performance and durability serious hunters demand.   You don’t have to spend a fortune to find a crystal clear scope.

3. Vortex Crossfire 2 4-12×44 Riflescope

Notable Features:

  • Value Priced
  • Premium Features
  • Clear Compared to Similar Priced Scopes
  • Waterproof

Check Price: Amazon

You can’t beat Vortex when it comes to budget optics.  Their Vortex Crossfire 2 4-12×44 Riflescope is easily one of my favorite long range scopes. Offering durability, premium glass and affordable price tags.

Known for loading up their budget lineup with all the best features.   When you’re on a budget you can’t go wrong with a Vortex scope.

The Vortex Crossfire lineup is extremely impressive for the price. Crossfire scopes come in just about any magnification level you can imagine. If there’s a demand, Vortex probably has a scope to fill the need.

They make scopes from 1-4x magnification all the way up to 6-24x magnification. So there’s a crossfire scope to fill just about everybody’s needs.

At a fraction of the price of the competition Vortex scopes are well worth a look.  Vortex has long given Leupold a run for their money.  With clear and bright sight pictures that match premium scopes. 

Multi-coated lenses both increase perceived light and protect your glass. The long eye-relife and ultra forgiving eye box allow you to quickly acquire your target. 

Vortex scopes are all backed by a lifetime no questions asked warranty.  With durable bodies and nitrogen purged tubes, it’s completely shockproof and waterproof.  Why spend a fortune when Vortex gives you all the quality you need.

4.  Nikon Buckmasters II 4-12x40mm Scope

Notable Features:

  • Value Priced
  • Waterproof
  • Durable Design
  • Easy To Use

Check Price: Amazon

Nikon’s Buckmaster scope is another very affordable option. Nikon has been making optics for a long time and knows how to make a hit. After teaming up with Buckmaster, they were able to make one of the best selling scopes of all time. With its low price and durable design you can’t beat the Nikon Buckmaster.

You simply won’t find a reliable scope for less than the Nikon Buckmaster. The Buck Master doesn’t have all the features of higher end scopes, but it’s not a slouch either.

With an extremely durable design that will handle serious abuse. Very few scopes in this price range use a completely waterproof and fogproof housing.

You never know you’re going to need a waterproof scope until it’s to late. With a high level of light transmission, you’ll see clearly in low light conditions. You shouldn’t have any issues shooting from dawn to dusk.

AR10 Scope Buying Guide

There’s a lot that goes into your new scope decision.  Improving your accuracy may seem all about the gear, but it takes a lot of hard work.  Learning which products are best suited for your shooting style matters more than the gear you have.  You need to find the scope that will work for your given experience level and financial situation.

  • Price:  It’s impossible for me to say how much you can comfortably spend.  Always match your scope to the rifle and experience level.  As tempting as it may be to buy a $1000 scope very few shooters will actually benefit.  More often than not poor accuracy is a result of inexperience and bad shooting form.  Long distance shooting is all about experience rather than gear.  Very few people will ever outgrow a moderately priced Leupold scope.
  • Magnification:  The AR10 offers a perfect platform for mid to long range shooting.  There are flatter shooting long range rounds, but you can’t beat the 308’s price.  With cheap reloading components, it’s the perfect beginners long distance platform.  You’re idea of long range is likely different than mine so magnifications will vary.  I’m a huge fan of the versatility 4-12x magnification scopes offer.  You can easily shoot out to 4-500 yards without over stepping the magnification.  Serious long distance shooters might be better off with a higher power scope.
  • Eye Relief: High power scopes are notorious for having short eye relief.  That’s alright on a 22, but add recoil into the equation and you might have some problems.  Unless you like the black eye look, you’ll want a few inches between your face and the scope.
  • Objective Lens:  As tempting as it might be to shave off a few ounces don’t reduce your objective lens size. Increasing the objective lens size will significantly increase your brightness.  The best multi-coating in the world can’t make up for a small objective lens.
  • Durability:  Durability is going to vary wildly from one scope to another.  You should always look for scopes that offer a lifetime warranty.  Breaking over the $100 price range will most likely get you a durable waterproof scope.
  • Design: Try to shave as much weight off your rifle as you can.  The AR10 is heavy so you’re going to find lightweight scopes and accessories.  Long range guns can weigh a little more, but you don’t want a heavy hunting rifle.
  • Other Features:  There are so many different features that it’s impossible to list them all.  At the very least make sure your scope’s waterproof.  You should also consider looking for an illuminated reticle.  Though it’s typically more expensive you’ll love the increased brightness.

How to Increase Your Shooting Range

Any AR10 will be able to accurately shoot out past 600 yards at less than 1 MOA.  Increasing your range past that will require a lot of practice.  The right gear in the wrong hands will never see any accuracy improvements.  With a lot of practice and ballistic knowledge you’ll be able to extend your range.  Once you’ve mastered the basics you can easily extend your range out past 1000 yards.  It’s hard to visualize how far that actually is until you get to the range. Zeroing your rifle at that range will take more than just blind luck.  You’ll need a lot of experience to have any kind of success.

  •  Get as Stable as Possible:  To increase your shooting range you’ll need to get as stable as possible.  You can increase stability by using bipods, shooting rests and even changing positions.  Shooting from the prone position eliminates body movement that reduces accuracy.
  • Use a Spotter:  Everybody likes shooting with a friend, but they should do more than offer moral support.  With the help of a spotting scope or a trained eye can help you dial in your shot.  At close range they probably won’t even need a scope.
  • Eliminate External Variables:  Try and control everything you possibly can when shooting at long range.  You can’t control the weather, but you can remove inconsistent gear.  Using a single stage reloading press will help standardize your ammo.  Buying quality mounts and optics will help reduce drift and stabilize your shot.
  • Use Scope Shadow to Eliminate Parallax–   When looking through your sight make sure you don’t notice any shadow along the outside rim.  At long range off center shooting will cause a huge miss.  The video below further explains the effects of parallax.

How Much Magnification Do You Need?

It’s hard to say exactly how much magnification you’re going to need.  Unless you regularly shoot at a long distance range you won’t need a high power scope.  It may seem obvious, but the farther you want to shoot the higher the magnification needed.  Buying to much scope will not only be a waste of money.  It will make it difficult to shoot at most shooting ranges. Unless you own a lot of land make sure there’s a long distance range close by.  There’s no point in wasting your money if you’ll rarely make it to the range.  The following categories should help you find the proper magnification.

  • Close Range (Under 300 Yards):  You don’t need to spend a fortune if you’re never going to shoot out past 300 yards.  Very few shooters will ever need to shoot past 300 yards.  There’s maybe 3 shooting ranges in my state that are longer than 300 yards.  You won’t need more than your average 3-9x magnification scope at this distance.  You might even want to go as low as 1-4x at this range.
  • Medium Range(300-700 Yards):  Bumping up your range a little bit will increase your magnification range.  I prefer a 4-12x or 3-9x scope out to 700 yards.  Choosing a 4-12x will give you a lot more versatility.  You’ll be able to shoot anywhere from 50-700 yards with a 4-12x scope.
  • Long Range(700+ Yards):  You’re going to need to spend some serious coin to go out past 700 yards.  There’s so much more than gear that goes into long range shooting.  As the saying goes “if you need to ask you can’t afford it”.  Long distance shooting is an art form that requires so many calculations that the average shooter will never understand.

Which is The Best AR10 Scope?

If you are looking for a high end scope you can’t beat the above Swarovski Scope. Swarovski scopes are extremely expensive, but you aren’t going to beat the clarity and range that this scope offers. For the majority of people the Leupold Scope is going to be the best. A good rule to live by is that you can never go wrong with a Leupold scope. They make very high quality yet still affordable optics. If you are looking for a budget scope the Vortex Crossfire and Nikon Buck Master are good options. Both of these scopes offer a lot of features for the price. Choosing one of the above options is going to be a good place to start.

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